National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir says his priority as the Jerusalem Pride Parade starts is to ensure there is not another “crazy” incident like the 2015 murder of Shira Banki.
“It is clear that in my role as national security minister, I do and will do everything so that there will not be a crazy case, like the murder of the girl Shira Banki,” says the far-right minister as he arrives at the police command to oversee security for the march.
Ben Gvir also reiterates his support for a counter-protest to the march.
“That’s their right as long as they don’t break the law and I told the police that I don’t want to see pictures of ultra-Orthodox or religious people who walk the streets of Jerusalem and are kicked off the streets because they are religious, because they wear a kippah or because they wear skirts,” he says.
The Jerusalem Pride Parade is the subject of heavy security and restrictions after an ultra-Orthodox extremist, Yishai Schlissel, stabbed Banki to death at the parade in 2015. Schlissel carried out the attack just a few weeks after he was released from prison after serving 10 years for stabbing and injuring marchers at the 2005 parade. He is currently serving life in prison.